17th Mar 2013

Batiks: A Jungle Adventure

Here's a few shots from one of my most recent treks into the Sri Lankan jungle. I had intended to shoot some of the wildlife, flora and fauna but instead I came upon this small batik factory. It is far from a modern factory, it is more of a one-man operation run by Janika in his little jungle shack. Janika has a real talent and the Batiks made here are among some of the best I've ever seen.
Over the past several decades the Indonesian art of Batik making has become firmly established in Sri Lanka. Batiks incorporate fascinating motifs and colours, some have a very traditional look whilst others display highly contemporary and individual designs. Janika is highly passionate about his work and is always thrilled to hear that you appreciate the delicate and intricate designs that he produces. From turtles, elephants, peacocks and Buddha's, to historical processions and beautiful scenarios, the designs created in this little jungle shack are unique to the island and the artistic flair shown by Janika is astonishing.

After visiting his jungle shop and purchasing a few different sarongs and elephant procession designs, I became firm friends with Janika. He agreed to let me photograph his most intricate designs and the techniques he employs for use in my forthcoming book. Whilst adding authenticity to the book, it will also be great publicity for his shop and products. Here's a few shots of the processes he uses together with some of the finished products he sells.